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Open Access Combating Tsunami Disaster Through EMDR

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After the 2004 tsunami devastation in Sri Lanka, many citizens experienced severe psychological reactions. The effectiveness of EMDR is illustrated in the treatment of seven of these individuals: 3 children and 2 adults with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and 2 adults with depressive symptoms. After 3–8 sessions of EMDR the symptoms were eradicated and these clients were free from their depressive feelings, anxieties, intrusions, and nightmares, were able to function normally, and were able to lead productive lives. These outcomes replicate those in the research literature demonstrating that EMDR is an efficacious treatment for PTSD in general, with specific utility for disaster-related PTSD. It is recommended that future controlled studies be conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of EMDR in the immediate aftermath of disasters and to assess its effectiveness with major depressive disorder.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2008-06-01

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  • The Journal of EMDR Practice and Research is a quarterly, peer-reviewed publication devoted to integrative, state-of-the-art papers about Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is a broadly conceived interdisciplinary journal that stimulates and communicates research and theory about EMDR, and their application to clinical practice.
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